When Barack Obama took office in January 2009, he promised that there would be at least one million electric cars on the road. He began pumping billions of dollars into the green energy technology to help develop the electric cars he promised. But the economy tanked and the green energy business was in severe trouble as were the major car manufacturers.
On Dec. 19, 2008, the struggling auto industry was given $17.4 billion from TARP. Of that money, General Motors received $13.4 billion. In April 2009, GM received an additional $2 billion and in May 2009 another $4 billion. However, on June 1, 2009, GM still filed bankruptcy leading to Obama instructing the Treasury Department to give GM a $30 billion bailout. Then in Dec. 2009 they received another $3.8 billion. In the course of that year, General Motors received a total of $53.2 billion of taxpayer money.
The bailouts were critically important to President Obama because he was relying on them to produce his promised electric cars. They were one of the leaders in the industry of electric car technology at the time and Obama needed to do whatever he could to keep GM afloat.
In December 2010, General Motors began production of the Chevy Volt, GM’s hybrid electric car. Besides production and sales of the Chevy Volt in the US, GM is sells them in Australia and New Zealand as the Holden Volt, in Great Britain as the Vauxhall Ampera and as the Opel Ampera throughout the rest of Europe. If you count all of the different versions of the Volt, GM has manufactured a grand total of only 62,000 electric hybrids.
Obama’s electric car has been anything but successful. According to the GM Authority website:
“Sales of the Volt meanwhile fell 25.6 percent from February 2013 to 1,210 units last month. And while the Volt still holds on to the overall sales lead over the Leaf, Volt sales appear to be slowing in 2014. In January, Chevrolet moved 918 units of the Volt, down from 1,140 in January 2013 and 2,392 in December 2013.”
Of course, having to recall 8,000 Volts in the US to resolve an issue involving fires hasn’t helped sales. Not even cutting $5,000 off the sales price in 2012 could help the sales of the Chevy Volt.
As if the Chevy Volt didn’t need more negative publicity, it is now being reported that it could cost anywhere from $3,400 up to $34,000 to replace the ‘drive motor replacement battery. Chevrolet dealerships in Los Angeles and Grand Rapids were called and asked for a quote to replace the battery unit in a 2012 Chevy Volt. They were given quotes that ranged from $3,400 to $34,000 depending on exactly what needed to be done and they needed to see the vehicle in order to ascertain what repairs needed to be done.
I went on the Kelly Blue Book website to find out how much a 2012 Chevy Volt in excellent condition was worth. It gave me a dealer trade-in value of $18,350. When I checked on selling it to a private party, it gave me a value of $19,835. So a car that is less than 2 years old still in excellent condition is worth less than the cost for a total battery replacement of $24,000.
So why would anyone purchase a vehicle that would be worth less than it’s infamous drive motor replacement battery? If Obama doesn’t produce an executive order that allows him to remain in office indefinitely, he only has about 2 ½ years left. I know the Chevy Volt is not the only electric hybrid, but it is the one that Obama seems to focus on. If GM has only been able to produce 60,000 in the first 3 years and sales are slowing, then I seriously doubt that Obama will be able to fulfil his campaign promise of a million electric cars on the road by the time he leaves office.
Other than forcing Obamacare down our throats, is there any other campaign promise that Obama has kept? I can’t think of any others off hand.